By Kevin Smith
More than £17m a year is expected to be spent in a proposed Lidl store for Bognor Regis.
The discount retailer has revealed the current figures for the likely annual turnover for its planned outlet in a detailed planning application.
Of the total, £13.8m will be spent on convenience goods such as groceries stocked by the intended store at Oldlands Farm in Shripney Road. The rest will come from comparison goods, such as major appliances.
But most of the spending will be transferred from the existing Lidl in the Peel Centre on the opposite side of Shripney Road.
Daniel Wheelwright, the company’s planning agent, says in a statement to Arun District Council: “A significant part of the trade diversion to the proposed store will come from the existing Lidl foodstore which will close when the proposed store is opened.”
The new Lidl was only likely to attract a small amount of spending from town centre shops like Morrisons and Iceland, he states.
The intended store will have a sales area of 1,410sq m but that is only 483sq m more than the current store to limit its impact on other businesses.
The proposals will also benefit Bognor Regis by boosting the town’s economy.
He says: “The proposal will support 40 local full-time equivalent jobs.
“(It will) result in a multi-million investment which will generate £1.9m per annum in wages for local people.
“Although it is acknowledged that many of the employees at the existing Lidl store are likely to continue working for the new store, the increase in floorspace will result in the demand for an increase in employees.
“A range of jobs will be provided from management and supervisor staff level to clerical, administrative and service positions.”
In accordance with national planning policy, Lidl had searched for alternative sites in the town centre but none could be found to match Oldlands Farm.
A total of 149 parking spaces will be provided at the store. They will include two rapid electric charging spaces.
The building will be single storey and incorporate 1,029.5sq m of photo-voltaic panels on its roof to generate some 915kwh of electricity to help it to become sustainable by using renewable energy.
The latest application by Lidl comes after Arun approved plans in March 2014 for a food retailer on the site, which has the Rolls-Royce Motor Cars logistical centre immediately to its east.
A further application to establish the retail use of the part of the land was backed by the council in February 2018.
As reported, Arun has also approved a scheme for the Saltbox location opposite in which an Aldi store will be located.